It’s “Holiday Shops Days” in downtown New Bedford this weekend, with an antique fire engine carrying Santa Claus, rides in horse-drawn carriage, tree-lighting in front of the Public Library, people singing carols outside our building, marching bands going up and down the downtown streets, sleigh bells jingling.
I’ve been sitting here in our apartment enjoying the festive sounds outside our windoww while I’m paying bills. I just opened up the year-end appeal from the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, and found the enclosed:
Katrina Emergency Tax Relief Act of 2005
As a point of information to donors considering philanthropic gifts to humanitarian agencies and other organizations… you may be interested in knowing about a recent tax relief act that affects philanthropic giving.
President Bush has signed into law a measure that allows donors to deduct qualified charitable gifts in amounts up to 100% of their Adjusted Gross Income. This temporarily suspends the current limitation of 50% of Adjusted Gross Income….
OK, I doubt that many readers of this blog are able to donate 100% of their adjusted gross income to charities providing services to Gulf Coast relief. But if there are such people reading this blog, I just wanted to let you know that you might want to talk with your financial advisors about whether you’re able to benefit from increased giving this year. There is still a great need for Gulf Coast Relief. Remember, too, that if you want to donate to the Gulf Coast Relief Fund of the Unitarian Universalist Association, a minimum of 95% of those donations will go directly to services (i.e., the fund has very low administrative costs).
Even those of us who can’t give 100% of your adjusted gross income in charitable donations should consider giving a gift to Gulf Coast Relief. There are lots of people along the Gulf Coast who could still use that kind of Christmas gift. Carol and I are planning our year-end giving right now, and we plan to give generously to Gulf Coast Relief.